The first week of January,the publishing company held a New Year’s party.
“I want to eat chocolate made by my little sister!!!”
Right after I shouted that, a cheer erupted around me – of course, I wasn’t at a drinking party or anything.
During that time, I began to look around. There was a nice table, three portion of drinks and two good-looking friends nearby.
“Ahahaha, a very Izumi-kun like answer!”
Light yellow jacket, student jeans – this was Shidou Kunimitsu-sensei, a novelist, who also had a specialty in making deserts. He’solder than me, but he is also my junior. Calm, polite, and easy going…but terrible at drinking.
“Ah ~ I wanna eat chocolate made by Emily too….”
Amelia Armeria – also known as the illustrator Armeria-sensei – sat here lazily, both her legswere straight. Today she wore her hair in a tight bun, with jeans, a T-shirt, which made her look like a pretty boy.
Of course she’s still a girl, but today she chose those pieces of clothing because of the current meeting.
By the way, we were at Army’s living room, and for the reason we were gathered —-
Yesterday, when the publishing company held a New Year’s party, Shidou-kun and I were chatting with each other in a corner. Other novelist in my generation were all older, and novelist in Shidou-kun’s generation were all defeated by Izumi Masamune during the World Light Novel tournament, so they didn’t come. In the end, the two of us spent time with each other.
Well, to be frank, it wasn’t like I didn’t know anyone else. ‘He’was the one with the biggest mouth here —
“Did you see my anime? How is that? Isn’t it great? Totally an original work! Ahahaha, just wait, my newest novel will open up a new era of light novels!”
As you see, no one would dare/want to come close to him.
Champagne in one hand, walking around randomly – that was Kusanagi Ryuki-sensei, my senpai. He was in his twenties, with more than six years of experience, which mean he was here three years before me.
Today, he put his blond (dyed) hair into a pony tail, and wore a clothes like a character in FF15 – a black coat with silver accessories. He had an aura of a successful novelist, the way he talked and moved around showed that much. Normally, he wasn’t like that, it was probably because he was so happy today.
From a distance, I and Shidou-kun looked at him, and discussed:
“Ahaha, doesn’t he sound like Yamada-san?”
Yup. Totally. At last year’s party, he was pretty normal. But now….
“So that’s how famous light novel authors are…terrifying.”
“Hm? Isn’t that Izumi!?”
Crap. He saw me. Kusanagi-senpai walked up to us with shaking legs, and asked:
“Long time no see, Izumi! You’re Shidou, aren’t you?”
“Ah, right.” “Yes, I am.”
“Want a drink?”
“Please no, we are still underage.” “My editor has forbidden me from drinking today. So no, thanks.”
At least the editor knew Shidou-kun was bad at drinking.
Faced with our refusal, Kusanagi-senpai raised his voice:
“What the hell? You two don’t want to drink with me?”
“Er…maybe next time?”
“Fine, don’t you dare to forget! Absolutely not!”
“Yes yes, we won’t.” With Shidou-kun politely declining, Kusanagi-senpai happily replied:
“Ok, I will use my money from the anime’s royalties to invite you!”
I highly doubt you would remember this evening, though.
Still, even without drinking, Kusanagi-senpai didn’t leave. He asked:
“What were you talking about? Anything good?”
He’s so annoying.
“Let’s talk about some famous names recently. What about Mimaki En.
“Please stop. Just stop!”
This industry is very small, a random comment during a party can easily reach the subject’s ear – after receiving additional rumors.
He had a bad habit of badmouthing other novelist/artist that he liked. He liked “Dark Violet”, “Biblia”, “Morpheus”, but since he worked in the same industry, his feeling were a mix of jealousy and respect…
“Then how about the tax evasion. Last year….”
“I beg you, please, talk about something else!”
You only choose subjects that would bring us trouble.
“Agh damn! I want to write something like Biblia, something that doesn’t need to depend on moe girls to attract readers! If only I could write something like 「Da Vinci 」—-“
Oh my god, to say that during a new year’s party…he is absolutely drunk!
“…Izumi-kun, is this the senpai that’sclose to our age that you talked about?”
“Yup, it was a right call to not introduce you.”
At least, not answering him.
By the way, there were only two novels that were made into anime last month. One was his「Pure Love 」the others was 「The Expurgatory Flame of Dark Elf 」 from Elf. In other words, the anime schedule was a fight between their two series.
Or – Elf’s opponent was Kusanagi-senpai. It was hard to say how it’ll turn out – but I hoped both sides could find a result that they could live with.
When I came back to my senses, no one was around anymore…of course, all of them were trying to get away from Kusanagi-senpai. It was even harder to find someone to talk to now.
Like two unseen ghosts, the two of us gathered in a corner. Suddenly, a voice called:
“Ah, Masamune! How are you?”
“Eh? Ah, you are —“
In the place of Kusanagi-senpai was our savior – Armeria-sensei.
“I don’t know anyone here, so how about introducing us?”
Since she took on the manga for Sekaimo, Armeria-sensei was invited to this party. Since she was about our age, a famous illustrator, abeautiful girl – we couldn’t afford to waste time. So we immediately made it clear that “Army-chan is ours! Don’t try to take her away!” and invited her to join us.
“It’s nice! As expected, friends in the same industry have a lot to talk about! I still have many things I want to say! Oh right, how about you two come to my home tomorrow, we can talk about girls too! Valentine’s is coming!”
And that’s how we gathered at Army’s house.
Today is a day after the party, and in the name of ‘guy’s talk’, we gathered at Army’s house.
Maybe because she thought that ‘it would be awkward if a girl was present’ so Army wore boy’s clothing. She was like this since her time as Eromanga-sensei the Great, she must like it this way.
First topic – “Valentine’s is coming, anyone have a plan?”
“I want my 「little sister chocolate」! It’d be better if it is full of love, a heart-shaped chocolate!”
I clenched my hand and announced loudly. Army narrowed her eyes, and answered half-heartedly:
“Yeah right, we already know that.”
“No you didn’t! No one understand how much I want chocolate from my little sister! I could write thousands of pages to describe how much I want it!”
“Slow down…what’s with this guy, Kunimitsu?”
“That’s how Izumi-kun is.”
“I see…the situation look serious.”
“Don’t look at me like that!” I yelled, but Army only grinned:
“So how is your sister going?”
“Last year, nothing happened. Or rather, I didn’t even see her!”
Back then, she was a complete hikikomori.
“But I saw her a few times already this year…”
I confessed, and was rejected.
“So I think I might have a chance.”
Although I said that, I felt like my chances had declined.
“A chance to eat your 「little sister chocolate」 this year?” Shidou-kun added.
“Yes yes! It’s totally normal for a little sister to give her brother chocolate, right? Nothing suspicious right? Should I ask her the next time we meet?”
“Sagiri’s ~ chocolate tasted so good ~ I like it a lot *glare* — or – the next volume has a scene on Valentine’s ~ but I have no experience in receiving chocolate from girls ~ it’s so difficult *glare”
“How about you make that 「 I want to eat chocolate 」 face?”
“I think….it will only backfire.”
“*Hic*…poor Izumi…I wanna cry…”
“I don’t need your pity!”
Now I really wanna cry!
“What about you two? Will you receive any chocolate from girls that you like?”
“Hmhm ~” Army grinned “Recently, Emily’s been practicing making chocolate a lot! I tried most of them too – that means she is making it for me! I win! I’m a winner this Valentine’s.”
She stood up and announced. But Shidou-kun rebuked her:
“Wait, normally no one lets the person they like taste their practice chocolates.”
Bullseye! Army looked like she was about to cry, so I tried to cheer her up:
“But at least you did eat them – only a friendly chocolate, but better than nothing.”
“..Izumi-kun, you just add insult into her injury,”
Only after he mentioned it did I realize I just threw a curve ball at her.
As expected, Army groaned:
“You two were jealous of me, weren’t you? So you crush my hopes immediately, right! Damn it!”
“Don’t be so sad, I don’t even know whether or not my little sister made chocolate for me. We’re even.”
“Shut up! Don’t group me and you together, damn siscon!”
“Why? I only mean well…”
“Stop! Stop now!”
Shidou-kun quickly separated us, he suggested:
“Nothing you two do here will change the situation…now…er…how about we try something else?”
“Hmm…maybe you’re right?”
“So what exactly are you suggesting?”
We listened to Shidou-kun and stopped arguing. He thought for a moment before saying:
“How about I make chocolate for you two?”
“No, you still don’t get it.”
“We aren’t just wanting to eat chocolate. We want to eat a chocolate filled with a sweet and bitter love from a little sister to her brother.”
“I told you to stop grouping me and you together, it’s gross!”
“How is it gross?! How could my pure feelings be gross!?”
Before we argued again, Shidou-kun said:
“Okay, I get it I get it. Let’s try to brainstorm ideas for our 「Counter Valentine Conference 」.”
“Counter Valentine Conference?”
“Yes. Counter Valentine Conference. We will think of a way to receive chocolate from the one we want.”
“Oh? And how exactly are you suggest we will do it?” Army asked, clearly interested.
“For example, Armeria-sensei —“
“Drop that sensei part.”
“Okay. Army-san wants chocolate from Yamada-san, right?”
Recently, he called Elf by “Yamada-san”. But while it was the traditional way, somehow it felt weird.
Army nodded. Shidou-kun continued:
“How about we ask Izumi-kun to do recon?”
“Yes. Know your enemy, know yourself and you can fight a hundred battles without disaster. Try to find out her interests, her expected outcomes…”
“I’m her childhood friend, do you think that I don’t know the answer for those question?”
“That was just an example. Okay, it’s decided then. Izumi-kun, you ask Yamada-san what kind of boy she like.”
“Then follow that sample, and by Valentine’s —“
“I will have chocolate.”
“Maybe I really could pull this off!”
Army broke into laughter.
“Hey, why does your laugher feel so weak?”
“Well, there is no guarantee that it will work, but like you said, better than nothing.”
I understand. This plan is much better than “acting like I want to eat chocolate”
“On the other hand, we let Army-onee-chan to do recon on my little sister, right?”
“Yes. And…what do you mean, onee-chan?”
“It’s nothing, forget it.”
Phew, I almost forgot that he still doesn’t know that Eromanga-sensei is Sagiri. I quickly changed the subject and asked Army:
“Then please ask if Sagiri going to make 「little sister chocolate 」 or not for me.”
“…I still don’t understand what is your 「little sister chocolate 」…is it the same as 「love chocolate 」?”
“「little sister chocolate 」is 「little sister chocolate 」! A chocolate filled with feelings of「I love my brother the most 」 from a little sister!”
Easy to understand, right? Hearing my description, Army folded her arms, tilted her head, and asked:
“So it’s just friendly chocolate?”
“Not friendly chocolate. Little sister chocolate!”
“Alright alright. Don’t draw so close, I will ask her for you, and I will ask what kind of boy she likes too.”
“Yes please! I’m depending on you.”
“You too, don’t forget about Emily.”
“Worry not, just let me take care of it.”
We shook our hands, an alliance had been formed.
Shidou-kun breathed a sigh of relief, and patted his chest:
“Thank heavens that you two have agreed on something.”
“…..” “ ……”
Both Army and I turned to him at the same time.
“What about you, Shidou-kun?”
“Valentine’s, valentine’s. We already told you our story, what about you? What kind of girl do you like, do you have any hopes of receiving chocolate this year?”
Army pushed him so hard that I could see the sweat bead on his forehead. But I only pushed him harder:
“This is a「Counter Valentine Conference 」. We won’t be able to help you unless you speak to us.”
“No, there is no need…”
“Don’t you think it’s very unfair?”
“Yes yes, don’t be afraid! Tell us who you like, Shidou-kun.♪”
“Say it! Say it! Say it! Say it!”
We both spoke. It would be troublesome if I were the one who was being teased, but it’s fun since I’m teasing someone else.
Of course, seeing that he is a bright young man, I thought the answer is “I already have a girlfriend”. Probably Army was thinking the same.
“…Alright, then I will say.”
“This is ~”
I was a bit surprised. Shouldn’t he already have a girlfriend?
“That mean Shidou-kun has a girlfriend?”
“No, not exactly. Actually…I still want chocolate.” He said, waving his hand in embarrassment.
“That sound good!”
“Who is it? Do we know her?”
“I like —“
“Kagurazaka-san, the editor.”
*Cough cough cough*
“Sorry, who?” I tried to ask between my coughs. Had I misheard?
“I want to receive chocolate from my editor, Kagurazaka-san.”
No! It can’t be!
“Hey, who is Kagurazaka-san? Do I know her?”
Army, you should! In the showdown, you contacted her, didn’t you?
Of course, normally I would have explained, but there is nothing normal here – I was so confused. I took another look at Shidou-kun, and I asked again:
“Kagurazaka-san, my editor? Are you sure?”
“Yes.” He answered with a hint of embarrassment.
“Are you kidding me? What is so great about her?”
I was so surprised that my reaction could be called rude. Shidou-kun looked annoyed.
“I only answered your question!”
“Eh, I meant, I’m sorry. But…Kagurazaka-san is…Shidou-kun, do you like her…like Kagurazaka-san?”
“What’s with your reaction? She is a beauty.”
“Well, you can say that….”
“During Christmas, Kagurazaka-san suddenly called me to a party.”
So that was the reason you left us that day?
Of course, I wouldn’t say that another possibility was that she called him solely because Muramasa-senpai suddenly decided to come to my home.
“She’s very hardworking and always does her best! She always gives me good feedback about my novels! When things went well, she shared my happiness! And she is a real beauty!”
Shidou-kun praised Kagurazaka-san non-stop, like some sort of servant.
“Sorry, I didn’t notice at all. She’sa lot older than me…”
“A lot older? Kagurazaka-san is only in her twenties.”
“That is double my little sister’s age!”
“She is about to become an old lady!”
“Hey, are you two trying to pick a fight with all woman over twenty?”
Shidou-kun’s forehead popped a vein, and he looked furious. Who would have thought he could get this way?
“Um ~Kunimitsu seemed to be doing okay, don’t you agree, Masamune?”
Hearing our conversation, Shidou-kun’s face twitched:
“…I don’t want to hear that from a pervert girl who loves other girls and a siscon, gay pervert…”
“I’m a pervert? Kukuku, I already knew that! I’m even proud of it!”
“I knew it, you still treat me that way! I’m not gay, how many times do I have to explain that before you can trust me? Besides, it’s not perverted if I like my little sister! Look it up, imouto moe is the world’s current trend!”
Then I finished “It’s much weirder to like an old lady!”
“How dare you! That’s the correct choice…if there were a normal man here….” Shidou-kun rebuked, his hand clenched.
“Ok, piece of cake!”
Army took her phone out and showed us a number – Fulldrive publishing company editor – Yamada Chris.
“How about I call him?”
“Excellent! Chris-san definitely would make a normal choice! Call him, Army!”
“Wait wait, don’t call him for something absolutely trivial!”
“Too late, I already called him! Ah, yes, Onii-chan? I’m the super miracle illustrator Army-chan! Er? What’s wrong? Ah, actually…er…I’m not sure, maybe I will keep drawing, maybe not. Yes, yes…eh? Now? I’m at home….okay, I’m waiting ♥”
Beep beep. Hang up.
“He said he will come as soon as possible!”
“…If he scolds you, I won’t intervene.”
Thus, our “Counter Valentine Conference between men” began.
The next day, we began to take action. In order to receive chocolate from the ones we liked, we helped each other to find out what exactly the girl’s “preferable boy” is. My target is Elf and Kagurazaka-san.
First is Elf – well, all I have to do is take a few steps outside. As usual, I brought a present (ice cream), but unexpectedly, she was working.
While she didn’t say it out loud, but from the distance to her living room, I saw the laptop on her table. Not to mention that she opened the door in normal clothes, unlike the gothic lolita dress, probably to make it easier to move around. Since it was a bit similar to Sagiri’s dress, I was stunned for a moment.
“Sorry, I heard that after making an anime, there is a lot of work to do…are you busy?”
“Nah, it’s fine. I’m about to take a break anyway.”
“It’s good then.”
In the recent months, Elf-sensei was working very seriously. She never missed a deadline before, now she played games even less. Aside from the anime 「The Expurgatory flame of Dark Elf 」which was scheduled in March, she even had to prepare for the Blu-ray, game story design, short stories – each of them was about five hundred pages long. Not to mention she still need to show up at other meetings…it’s clear that she had a focus solely on working.
She had become a hardworking genius! A perfect elf! As expected, the anime raised her responsible awareness.
I couldn’t help but stare at my “senpai”.
“What’s up? Is there something on my face?”
“No, I was thinking that Yamada Elf is so cool today.”
“..Wh, what are you talking about!?”
Elf was startled, she quickly turned away.
I sat down, took a slip of tea, then asked the main question:
“Hey Elf, what kind of boy do you like?”
“Eh? Eh? Ehhhhhhhhhhhhhhh????”
Elf was reading a cookbook, but hearing my question surprised her so much that she dropped it!
“Wh, wh, what are you asking that for? So suddenly!!”
What exactly should I say? I definitely couldn’t tell the truth….okay, let’s use a so-so response.
“Just answer it normally.”
“Hah? What do you mean, normally?”
She was clueless just a second ago, but now Elf looked like she got it? Could it be that she already saw through it? I knew that she could be unusually sharp…
“I see…answer naturally huh…”
Her cheeks were crimson, and she turned her eyes away. Then she picked up the dropped book, and replied:
“Okay, I will tell you what kind of boy I like.”
Somehow, she looked quite happy. Good, the beginning went without trouble. While I was asking in Army’s place, I do want to know what kind of boy Elf likes.
“Listen well – I like boys who – can play games that I also play!”
“ —“ I stared dumbfound. “…What’s that supposed to mean?”
So, if I try to spell it out…
“Of course, his level must not too far behind me – for example, he needs to have a character at least level 200 in Diablo 3, must be able to clear a map of Civilization 4 in God mode. In Poke**n, he also need a single rate of 1800 or higher. He must be able to play Power Pro , FPS  or play co-op in TPS . He need at least twelve platinumcups, can play mini-car racing an home, can fight toe-on-toe with me in Super Smash Bros without using Rosetta, can act as a Game Master in T-RPG can take part in TCG. Every month, he need to watch at least five anime, read twenty manga and light novels. Fufu, not to mention that he —
— Could focus every fiber of his being to create a good light novel”
“The rest are small conditions that don’t have to be fulfilled…okay, that’s a boy I like.”
Suddenly, Elf gave me a charming smile:
“As long as someone can fulfill one of those conditions and truly love me, I could seriously consider dating him.”
To tell the truth, I only understand half of what she said, but I do understand “what kind of boy” she liked.
Anyway, just like she declared: life’s a game, she needs a boy who could also play with her.
“Thank you, I got it.”
“You have to try your best!”
Why did she suddenly pat my shoulder?
“Ah…by the way…” Suddenly Elf took a peek at me, and shuttered “…Masamune, do you like sweets?”
“Why are you asking me that?”
“Just answer me! I already answered your question!”
“Er….not exactly…let me see…sweets huh….meat bun, maybe?”
“….Name some western dish.”
“Western? Cake then. As long as it’s not too sweet.”
“Hmhm ~ not too sweet huh? Okay, got it.”
“Why are you asking this so suddenly?”
However, to answer my question, Elf only closed one eye, put a finger to her lips and said “A girl’s secret.”
After successfully asking “What kind of boy that Elf liked”, next is Kagurazaka-san, my own editor. I had a meeting with her anyway, so I took that chance to ask some questions.
One night, I was sitting in a meeting room at the publishing company, face to face with Kagurazaka-san.
Kagurazaka Ayame had short hair and wore a suit. She’s still young, but Army called her an old lady already.
“What’s up, Izumi-sensei? Why are you laughing?”
“Nothing! Nothing at all!”
It’s not nice to badmouth her behind her back. I felt embarrassed just from looking at her.
She didn’t seem convinced, but she let it pass.
“By the way, Kyouka-san just came.”
“Crap, Aunt Kyouka?”
“Yes, she asked for an updateon Izumi-sensei’s work, so I met her.”
I immediately stood up rigid in reflex. Aunt Kyouka is the guardian of Sagiri and I, and my father’s little sister. Now she gave me two conditions in order to continue the current lifestyle.
Keep up both work and study. I have to show her some results.
Improve Sagiri’s condition.
Ah…so it’s time…
“Fufufu, don’t worry! had lot of praise for you!”
To tell the truth, her suspicious smile only made me worry even more.
“Thank you, Kagurazaka-san…so…can I ask you to check the document for Kyouka-obaa-san this year too?”
“Just leave it for your editor! Hey you guy over there, prepare what Izumi-sensei asked!”
Because of Kyouka-san’s subject, I almost forgot about Shidou-kun’s request until the later part of our meeting.
“By the way, Kagurazaka-san, there is something I want to ask you…”
Damn, it’s so embarrassing. But since I did promise him…
“Do you have a boyfriend?”
Kagurazaka-san paused for a moment, thinking for a while before replying:
I don’t particularly care, but this was good news for Shidou-kun. She’s still single!
“What about chocolate during this Valentine’s…”
An immediate answer. What…next? Shidou-kun doesn’t seem like he would get chocolate.
“Um…for example…okay…just an example…I think that if Kagurazaka-san made chocolate for your novelists, maybe we would be motivated and work harder.”
“Eh? Is someone interested in them?”
“Yes, there is.”
Why do you think I waste time asking those question?
Kagurazaka-san looked directly at me, probably wondering about this suggestion.
“…I’ll think about it.”
That way, even though Shidou-kun’s chances at getting chocolate increased, but I still think that wasn’t enough.
I already wanted to end the conversation, but I could almost hear Shidou-kun’s shouting “Izumi-kun, ask the main question! Ask it!”
Alright! So I continued:
“There is another question. Can I ask what kind of man you like?”
“…This is the first time I’ve seen someone ask a love question with such a forced expression on their face.”
I really, really don’t want to ask either!
Hah…why am I have to ask about my editor’s choice in men? I did promised my junior, but…ah, so troublesome. Not to mention that I feel a lot of conflict inside me, probably because I had absolutely no interest in her love life. And to be honest, why should I be in the first place?
Kagurazaka-san thinks for a moment before answering:
“What kind of man I like? Are you trying to get references for a novel?”
“Yes yes. References.”
“Hm ~ I see. References huh ~”
She smiled, putting both her hands under her chin.
Damn it! She must has another weird misunderstanding again! Based on our previous conversation, I bet she was thinking that I asked for chocolate and what kind of man she likes because I was interested in her.
But it wasn’t the case! Absolutely not! If I knew it would turn out this way, I wouldn’t have even asked!
I tried to act calm, and continued:
“Yes, for references — see, Valentine’s is coming. My next novel is about Valentine’s too, so I plan to write this event.”
“Hmhm, got it got it ♪ Ahaha ~ I’m so often greeted by youngster nowadays.”
It’s just your wishful thinking, lady!
Of course, I didn’t dare saying that out loud, but probably the one greeting her was Shidou-kun. I looked at her, asked:
“Since I need references, please answer me honestly.”
“Okay, go ahead ♪”
“Kagurazaka-san, what do you think about novelists who are younger than you? For example, will you consider going out with then?
It’s done! Done! Thank me, Shidou-kun! I threw away my dignity to ask that question for you!
Kagurazaka-san closed her eyes. I was afraid that she would be angry, but …
“This question goes with what kind of man I like, huh?”
She smiled. A smile that was totally different from the one before. Much calmer.
“If there is someone who could give his work everything, then no matter how old he is I think that he is praiseworthy. If I go out with him…I will be happy.”
This was her carefully worded response.
Seeing how “mature” Kagurazaka-san was acting, a teenager like me could do nothing aside from retreat.
A few days later, we gathered at Army’s home again to hold a「Counter Valentine Conference」. The participants were the same – me, Army and Shidou-kun.
I made my report first:
“— That concludes my report about Elf.”
“So Emily like guys who could play video games with her? Well, I certainly can! Someone who can put everything to work? I can do that too! I draw manga, I take care of anime. I fit her description, don’t I? Right?”
Army put a finger to her chest, and grinned from ear to ear.
“Yeah, it fits you…”
What I didn’t say is that it fits almost anyone with an interest in anime, manga, games, music, and film….
“Alright alright, this time I will definitely get chocolate! Nice job, Masamune! As reward, I will give you chocolate when February 14th comes. Of course, just friendly chocolate, so don’t expect anything more.”
“I know it already. Friendly chocolate as thanks, isn’t it?”
“What? You don’t want it?”
“I do! Please give it to me! Please!”
After I begged for it, Army finally agreed. She added:
“Be honest with yourself. Just make sure to thank me.”
“Yes yes! Thank you! Thank you very much!”
Seeing how much I lowered myself, Shidou-kun took a step back, asked:
“I, Izumi-kun…you will accept friendly chocolate even if it comes from a girl you don’t like?”
“Of course I will!”
I have never receive chocolate in my entire life! Yes, I love 「little sister chocolate 」 the most, but friendly chocolate is fine too.
“I see. Well, I myself only need chocolate from the girl I like, no one else.”
“Then you won’t have any.”
Army teased. Shidou-kun smiled wryly before turning to me:
“Ah, I asked Kagurazaka-san too.”
“Thank you! Thank you so much!”
“Well…I did promise you…”
Seeing how happy he was, made me felt that the humiliation I received before was worth it.
“ — That’s all.”
Just went I finished, Shidou-kun clenched his hand, and shouted:
“No boyfriend. No problem with dating a younger novelist! Kagurazaka-san really said that?”
“Not exactly word for word…”
“Doesn’t matter his view, his job, his income. Oh, so noble! Truly, a holy maiden!”
“Eh…that might be a bit too much…”
Today Shidou-kun is so weird…
“Good! That means I have a chance! I could ask her for a date, right!”
How could I know that! You go ask her yourself!
Of course I didn’t say that out loud. I need to keep my manners and all.
While I wanted to give advice to my junior, I have no interest in my editor’s love life. If she was someone else, then I would have joined in.
“Shidou-kun, maybe I shouldn’t say it like this, but now thingsare up to you.”
“Yes yes! Thank you! Thank you!”
“I don’t know what else I could do…take care of the rest.”
Saying that, I felt so damn tired and dropped my shoulders.
Finally, it’s over! Mission accomplished.
No wait! I quickly looked up:
“Wait Army! My little sister chocolate!”
“Oh right right. I did ask Sagiri for your sake.”
My little sister Sagiri is a hikikomori. She barely left her room, I barely had a chance to see her, much less talk about love.
Now it’s time to ask Army-sensei! As the one who drew the manga of Sekaimo, she is the one who could access the locked room easily. And Army-Onee-chan can ask Sagiri about anything, including love.
Seeing how nervous I was, Army asked:
“Masamune, before hearing my report, answer a question. What kind of girl do you like?”
“Yes? Why? I only need to know what kind of boy Sagiri likes.”
“What’s the matter, just answer!~ Then I’ll answer your question.”
I don’t get it, why does she need to know what kind of girl I like? Did she have a conversation with Sagiri in the locked room?
Forget it, it doesn’t matter if I tell her anyway.
“Okay, you only need to know what kind of girl I like, right?”
“Yes. And I forbid you from answer with my「little sister 」”
“Eh? What’s wrong with that?”
“If you answer that you like yourlittle sister, that gives me absolutely nothing on your character. Think carefully before answering.”
“Hm…what kind of girl I like huh…”
Hmmm…so sudden. I have to think carefully, this is no laughing matter. I think for a while, until an answer came to me.
“…What? That was unexpected…but not much different if you said you like your little sister…but at the same time, your little sister doesn’t exactly fit that description.”
“Is that so?”
“Ah, could it be that you like…” She blushed, pointed at herself.
“No. You are trustworthy, yes, but it’s not like that.”
“Oh? I was thinking that maybe you like me, but are still trying to beat around the bush.”
“That’s your imagination.”
Yes, with her talent – if I didn’t already have someone in mind I would have fallen for her – she is trustworthy and cute.
“Anyway, I got the trustworthy part. What about faithful?”
“I don’t want to answer this question.”
“Hm ~ a bit suspicious. But since you don’t want to, okay.”
Army seemed like she realized it and didn’t push anymore.
After listened to us, Shidou-kun suddenly said in a serious tone:
“Trustworthy…and faithful…! Ah, I knew it!”
“Hey! Your misunderstanding is even worse than Army!”
How can I convince him that I’m not gay?
“Anyway, that was my answer, now I want yours. Tell me what kind of boy Sagiri likes, and the chances for me to get chocolate.”
“Ahaha” Army grinned “For now, Sagiri doesn’t plan on making chocolate.”
“Since the kitchen is your territory, she said she won’t trespass in it.”
Sagiri knew that the kitchen is something that “my mother” left me, so she never uses it when I’m not at home. And since she hid in her room when I was home, she couldn’t make chocolate.
“Wait Army…even a hikikomori could still buy chocolate from the Internet! How about…”
“I asked her that too. She said 「Unless I make it myself, I won’t be able to win – so no buying 」.”
“What is that supposed to mean? The one Sagiri loves has a lot of girls falling for him – like that?”
“I don’t know whether or not it was the case, but I got a feeling that it wasn’t the case. I think that she meant 「I want to make it myself and give it myself 」.”
“Isn’t that clear? She planned to give him chocolate herself!”
“Who knows? Anyway, your chance of getting 「little sister chocolate 」 is pretty much nonexistent. Just give up.”
“Well yeah. I didn’t have much hope from the beginning anyway.”
When I was depressed, Shidou-kun attempted to comfort me:
“Izumi-kun, but you still can receive 「Gay chocolate 」from Eromanga-sensei.”
“NeitherEromanga-sense or Iare t gay, how many times do I have to tell you that?!”
He still thinks that Eromanga-sensei is an old man…
“By the way, did you ask Sagiri if she has a boyfriend?”
“Nope. We had an agreement, so I didn’t ask her that question.”
“What! This is important to me!”
”But I did ask her what kind of boy she like.”
“Tell me, please.”
“Alright. With a very embarrassed expression, Sagiri said —
“….I’m…always…always …causing trouble for him”
“That was what she said.”
“Ha..my little sister is so troublesome.”
“I agree completely.” She sighed.
And so – Valentine’s had arrived.
“In the end I couldn’t think of any countermeasure.”
I was always causing trouble for him? What exactly does that mean? I cook for her everyday, I do the housework everyday, I spoil her everyday…it seemed all I did was the opposite of what she said.
“I give up.”
Not to mention that “that kind of boy” probably means “one guy”. It’s useless to try to mimic someone else in that situation.
Anyway, little sister chocolate is out of the question. Thus, Valentine’s is meaningless now. Well, at least I get friendly chocolate from Army.
So, that day, me (and half of the class) spent the day in a depressed mood.
During lunch break, Tomoe came and asked me.
“Mune-kun, what’s wrong? You look horrible.”
Takasago Tomoe, a real beauty with long black hair.
“That’s because I didn’t receive any chocolate today.”
“Fufufu, I see ~ so Mune-kun has someone in mind, but that person doesn’t seem to care about you.”
“It’s so embarrassing, you don’t have to say it out. And…why are you laughing like that?”
She’s still trying to hide something behind her back, then suddenly she gave me a box.
“Here, a present.”
“!? Tomoe-san? Could it be —“
“…Open it” She said, blushing slightly.
“T, Thank you…”
With a hope filled my heart, I tore up the wrapping paper and opened the present…
Inside was the chocolate that Tomoe made for me —- nope, it wasn’t.
“Valentine’s Choice” – Author: Miura Isao
“A Light novel?”
“Fufu….a light novel about Valentine’s is used as a present for a light novel author during Valentine’s…it’s a new experience, isn’t it?”
“And that’s why….you gave me the novel 「Valentine’s Choice 」 by Miura Isao-sensei?”
“Yes. Do you like it?”
“It makes the misunderstanding even worse!”
I thought that I had finally received chocolate! The first chocolate in my life that someone gave me! You got my hopes up.
“Hey hey, what are you getting angry for? Of course you should have read this book after reading 「The Sacred Blacksmith 」.”
“Then you should have given me 「Christmas’s choice 」 — no no, that’s not the problem! Saying it is rude to Miura Isao-sensei, but today I don’t want a light novel! Please, just give me friendly chocolate is fine!”
I yelled, but Tomoe only laughed it off:
“Sorry sorry – but today I’m not giving you friendly chocolate.”
“We’re friends, why not?”
She stopped smiling and raised a finger:
“No no, if I gave you friendly chocolate, that’s just friendly chocolate.”
“??? Why is what you’re saying so difficult to understand?”
She calmly took the “Valentine’s Choice” from my hand, gently said:
“Because I’m a literature girl.”
After school, I went with Tomoe to the front entrance.
“Oh, by the way, I need some references for my romantic comedy novel, can you answer some of my questions please?”
“I’m looking for 「What kind of boy do you like 」, can you answer me?”
“Um? What kind of boy I like? He better like going with me to the bookstore, and chatting about light novels with me.” She answered without hesitation.
“Ah, I knew that you’d prefer someone who shared your hobby.”
“Yes yes, that’s important. Oh, by the way, I don’t mind his height.”
“Crap, why are you looking at me? Are you calling me short!”
“You get mad whenever I mentioned it…”
“I will definitely get taller! I drink milk every day! I will reach 180cm before graduation, just you wait!”
“It’s not…never mind. I don’t really mind anyway.”
Just when we arrived at the entrance, a voice called to me:
I turned and saw a girl in middle school uniform – Megumi.
She run to me, her pig tails swinging back and forth. Then she played the role of “little sister’s friend” and rubbed her face into my chest:
“Ehehe ~ here I am.”
“What are you doing here?”
I asked with a puzzled expression, Megumi smiled
“Do you still need to ask ~ this is my Valentine’s chocolate for you.”
She gave me a well-wrapped bag of chocolate.
I was stunned speechless for a moment.
“For, for me?”
“Really ~ who else would I could give it to?”
“But…is…it really for me?”
I can’t believe it. I can’t believe that finally, I have received chocolate from a girl, from my little sister’s classmate.
“Of course. You helped me a lot, how could I not remember my dear Onii-san ~”
She pushed the bag to me. I could see many smaller chocolate balls inside – she probably made it herself. They looked normal, but in my eyes they were sparkling.
“For you ♪”
With trembling hands, I took it from her. Tears overflowed from my eyes.
“Aha..ahahaha..I’m so happy! I never knew that receiving chocolate during Valentine would make people so happy.”
Of course, I knew it’s just friendly chocolate – consider Megumi, she probably gave all boys she know one bag each. But it doesn’t matter, I’m still happy.
“Ehehehe ~ seeing you happy made me blush.”
Megumi played with her hair, took a look at Tomoe then asked:
“But Onii-san probably got a lot of chocolate already, right? From Tomoe-chan, Muramasa-chan and Elf-chan.”
“Nope. Tomoe only gave me a book! This is the first chocolate I’ve received in my entire life! I really have to thank you!”
I said honestly. Maybe Megumi will be surprised, but it’s fine.
“I…I see.” She looked down, turned away “So it’s your first time…ah, I felt so embarrassed! It’s all your fault!”
Still blushing, Megumi hit me in the chest a few times.
“Wh, what’s wrong?”
“Nothing at all! Hm!”
She turned and began to walk away. I was thinking that she would leave, but Megumi looked back and laughed mischievously.
“Prepare yourself, Onii-san. I will steal many of your first timeslater ♥”
Then she immediately ran away.
“What is she talking about….”
I was blushing furiously, while Megumi muttered to herself “I see…it’d better if you said it sooner….”
After saying goodbye to Tomoe, I returned home. Since I got Megumi’s chocolate, I felt a lot better – no matter how many times I think back.
In short: Event – good. Megumi – sly. Present – Nice.
I never thought that just because she gave me chocolate, I no longer felt that I couldn’t handle Megumi. In fact, I even found myself wondering “Did she like me?” – “No no, I’m already in love with someone else”
Not to mention things will never that easily.
“Looks like I’m quite easy to handle.”
I laughed softly and put a hand on my house’ doorknob. The cold I felt quickly pulled me back to reality.
This was not a pleasant topic – every time I went home, I was a bit afraid of opening this door. I’m afraid of seeing the cold, empty entrance. Every time I saw it, I remember the day when mom passed away due to a traffic accident, the day when dad and I started living alone.
But now I have more or less accepted this fact, I no longer cry because of that – because I still have Sagiri. Sometime, she slammed the ceiling, to acknowledge my return. There was a time when she herself came down and greeted me.
Today is no different from the others. Izumi Masamune pushed the door opened, and said “I’m home” and —
First was the sound of footsteps, then two voices came at the same time:
“Welcome back, Masamune-kun.”
“Too slow! Where have you been? Were you trying to flirt with someone on the way.”
Coming to greet me were Muramasa-senpai in her kimono and Elf in an apron.
This unreal scene made me stunned for a moment, before breaking into laughter.
“What are you two doing? Elf, did you came in from the second floor? Seriously, don’t use Sagiri’s room as your entrance.”
“Nah, Sagiri only hates going outside, it’s fine.”
Well if you say so. Besides, it’s true that Sagiri only doesn’t want to go out.
“And you too senpai. If I remember correctly, you should have already burn through your monthly allowance and couldn’t leave Chiba, right?”
That was a perfectly normal reason for a high school student, but to think that she is a famous novelist with absurd high sales.
She scratched her cheek, and answered:
“It’s true…I totally forgot about…Valentine’s…so I had to beg my parents for next month’s allowance.”
To think such a delicate girl like her could forget something…anyway, that’s how she is.
Elf patted Muramasa-senpai’s shoulder, and added:
“Muramasa is going to sleep at my house tonight, okay?”
“Yes. I’m free tomorrow, there is no need to go back during the night.”
Seeing my puzzled expression, she explained:
“Masamune-kun, to tell the truth, I don’t have any money to buy chocolate…so can I cook dinner instead?”
“Senpai…you’re going to make dinner?”
“As long as you allow me to use the kitchen that mother-in-law left behind.”
Yes, that was the only thing mother left behind for me, but it’s not like I will never let anyone else touch it. And mother would probably be happy if someone else used it.
“Let’s go with it.” She smiled “Everyone, let’s eat together. I will make Sagiri-kun’s portion too.”
Sagiri-kun huh…seemed like everyone was getting along well.
Like my family was together again. Warm and happy.
After confirming the course of action, she opened the door and went out.
“I’m going to get ingredients.”
“Ah, please wait for me to get money —“
“Don’t worry, everything is already prepared.”
She left. Next to me, Elf pouted.
“She acts like she did everything herself, but she’s only going to take it out of my fridge.”
“Ah, sorry. I troubled you again.”
“I don’t mind, you’re always like that. Do you remember that you used all of my printer’s ink? How about paying that back?”
I couldn’t say anything back.
“Ah, by the way, I made chocolate like you requested. Were you looking forward to it?”
Why didn’t I remember it? Not to mention…
“You….plan to give me chocolate? Didn’t you meant that….everyone eating together?”
“You! Damn! Idiot! Idiot idiot idiot!” Elf shouted, while thrusting her index finger at my chest with each words “I’m giving it to you! Giving! To! You! A super beautiful girl is making handmade chocolate for no reason other than giving it to you! So you have to show your gratitude! Do! You! Get! It?”
“I…I got it.”
I think that I’m the only guy in the world who was receiving chocolate and a lecture at the same time.
Elf opened her hands wide, said:
“Really — to think that you still manage to misunderstand, what an idiot! Just like those protagonists in light novels! You are one of the candidate for my future husband!” She looked down a bit before continuing “I’m only going to marry someone I love. So listen well, I will make it as clear as possible, clear enough for an absolutely dense light novel protagonist to understand —
This is love chocolate.”
“Do you get it now?”
She smiled. A beautiful, and innocent smile that was full of life.
On the other hand, I felt like someone just hit me with an iron rod. In any romantic novel, this event should only happen at the end, during the climax. To say it now is something only the girl named Yamada Elf could do.
And so, I could only answered with one word “Yes”, and my heart totally calmed.
At that time — *Bang bang bang* — the ceiling shook.
“Alright, go.” Elf suddenly said.
When I passed the stairs, about to walk into the locked room – suddenly
The door was open? What’s going on? Did Sagiri open it? Wait, there was something on the floor.
I carefullywalked over and saw a note which said 「↑ 」.
“???? Is it telling me to go inside?”
While I didn’t get it, but I pushed the door. With a *creak*, the locked room opened.
“!? Wh, what the heck?”
I couldn’t help but yelp. Something strange and cute was in front of me.
Human-shaped. A body made of many cardboard boxes, all had the word ‘amazon.co.jp’ written on them. About my little sister’s height. The highest box showed me her face.
“…Wh, what the? Sagiri?”
“How is that?”
It jumped, and turned around, stretched her arms and legs, said.
I had no idea how to react to this situation. Maybe dozens of seconds later, it finally tilted its head, and asked:
“What do you think?”
“What do you think seeing me in this?”
She looked proud of herself, but what exactly should I say?
Sagiri proudly patted her chest-cardboard box, said:
“I could wear it! No problem.”
The voice was coming from the computer’s speaker. Sagiri laughed:
“I put the headphone inside too.”
….Amazing…but what next? What should I say next?
“So, what do you think!?”
Crap, she was pushing me.
“Er…what do I think huh…I think…think….”
I started to feel a headache, so I said the first thing in my mind.
“Full Armor Sagiri?”
Her eyes turned into >.<, and she looked displeased. That meant she didn’t like that name, it looked like I was bad at naming things.
“Sorry, but I don’t know what you expected me to say.”
Sagiri blushed furiously, she looked so moe!
“But…If I have to say…it’s probably not the answer you’re waiting for” I couldn’t hold it anymore and broke into laughter “It’s so hilarious!”
Sagiri was stunned for a moment, like she just took a heavy hit. Then she turned away.
“Ah, I see. Hm! Now the plan is a mess!”
“Who cares!” She raised a hand “Help me take it off.”
“So you couldn’t take it off yourself….”
I helped her take the box on her head and hands off, keeping the legs and body boxes intact. Sagiri took something out and after a bit hesitation, gave it to me.
“Just take it.”
I already forgot about Valentine’s at this point, so I just took it without thinking.
I only realized when opened it.
“Yes. Take a look.”
“Wow, nice! Oh, this is a character from Sekaimo. Did you…you made it yourself? Even Cospa couldn’t do something like this.”
I think back to all those stockings with image of He*** Kitty or Pr***** Cute. But this one in my hands is much better.
Hearing that, Sagiri became much happier. She began to praise her work:
“Hmhm ~ only I could make this.”
“Yes…you’re getting better and better at this. It’s great.”
“Hehe…I win, finally!”
I was abit disappointed that there is no “little sister chocolate” during Valentine’s, but –
“Now you are better than me. I will treasure it.”
“It’s still cold outside…be sure to wear it outside.”
“Er? Wearing this 「little sister 」stocking outside?
People will see me even if I wear long jeans.
“It will be warm…right?”
“No problem! I will wear it! I will wear it even on the subway train!”
Tomoe gave me a light novel. Megumi and Army gave me friendly chocolate. Muramasa-senpai gave me a dinner. Elf gave me victory chocolate. My little sister gave me a pair of stockings —
This winter is no longer cold and lonely anymore.
“By the way, why do you like a「faithful girl 」, Nii-san?”
The sudden question surprised me for a moment.
“That was…Army-chan, she…she told me without me asking…so…I …don’t really want to know.
“Sagiri, the reason —“I answered slowly. This wasn’t anything secret, just answering Army back then would ruin the atmosphere.
“Is because I don’t want to lose my lover again.” I gently smiled “I hope my lover could always be by my side, so I like faithful girls.”
“Hm ~ is that so.”
“You too, be careful to not get a cold.”
 http://myanimelist.net/people/17147/En_Mikami: manga artist. I haven’t read any of his work, thought.
 A baseball video game in Japan
 First Person Shooter – Eg: Counter Strike, Call of Duty, Battlefield…
 Third Person Shooter – Eg: Resident Evil, Grand Theft Auto…
 Probably some kind of achievement
 A crossover game with many famous characters from others Nintendo game
 Tabletop Role Playing Game: RPG played with dice and character sheet, Eg: Dungeon and Dragon
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 A Japanese company specify in making cosplay clothing